Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Education Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Washington, DC Washington, DC 20510

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1 December 17, 2008 Hon. Tom Harkin Hon. Arlen Specter Chairman Ranking Member Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Education Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, and Related Agencies Education and Related Agencies Washington, DC Washington, DC Hon. David Obey Hon. James Walsh Chairman Ranking Member Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, Education Subcommittee on Labor, HHS, and Related Agencies and Related Agencies Washington, DC Washington, DC Dear Chairman Harkin, Ranking Member Specter, Chairman Obey, and Ranking Member Walsh: The Friends of AHRQ (list attached) wish to thank you for your support of the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). We respectfully urge you to provide AHRQ through the final Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies appropriations bill $375 million for fiscal year 2009, consistent with the level proposed earlier this year by the House Labor-HHS Appropriations Subcommittee. AHRQ supports research to improve health care quality, reduce costs, advance patient safety, decrease medical errors, and broaden access to essential services. AHRQ provides the high quality, unbiased information needed to make educated decisions about our health care. As you know, there has been a dramatic decline in the number of, and funding for, grants that support researcher innovation and career development. The Friends of AHRQ support the language and funding proposed in the House and Senate Labor-HHS reports for new and competing grants to rejuvenate the free marketplace of ideas, and greater investment in young researchers to ensure the field s capacity to respond to the growing public and private sector demand for research. We hope you will provide AHRQ in the conference bill $13 million for such investigator initiated research and professional development consistent with the level proposed by the House Labor-HHS Appropriations Subcommittee. With the $40 million increase proposed by the House Labor-HHS Appropriations Subcommittee just percent of the $2 trillion Americans spend annually on health 1

2 care AHRQ will continue and begin to restore its critical health care safety, quality, and efficiency initiatives; strengthen the infrastructure of the research field; and reignite innovation and discovery. At a time when you, your congressional colleagues, and members of the new administration are considering major health reform, your leadership demonstrates your commitment to AHRQ and building the evidence-based needed to ultimately improve health and health care. Please know that the Friends of AHRQ and our grassroots partners stand ready to support you in securing $375 million for AHRQ in fiscal year Please contact Emily Holubowich at or with any questions or comments. 2

3 AARP Academic Pediatric Association Administrators of Internal Medicine Advanced Initiatives in Medical Simulation Aetna AFL-CIO Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine Alliance for Aging Research Ambulatory Pediatric Association American Academy of Family Physicians American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons American Academy of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery American Academy of Pain Management American Academy of Pediatrics American Academy of Physician Assistants American Association for Clinical Chemistry American Association for Dental Research American Association of Colleges of Nursing American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy American Association of Critical-Care Nurses American Cancer Society American Chiropractic Association American Clinical Laboratory Association American College of Cardiology American College of Clinical Pharmacy American College of Healthcare Executives American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine American College of Physicians American College of Preventive Medicine American College of Rheumatology American College of Obstetrics & Gynecology American Dental Association American Dental Education Association American Federation for Medical Research American Gastroenterological Association American Geriatrics Society American Health Planning Association American Health Quality Association American Heart Association American Hospital Association 3

4 American Medical Association American Medical Informatics Association American Nurses Association American Optometric Association American Osteopathic Association American Pediatric Society American Pharmacists Association American Physical Therapy Association American Psychiatric Association American Psychological Association American Psychiatric Nurse Association American Public Health Association American Public Human Services Association American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition American Society for Reproductive Medicine American Society of Internal Medicine American Society of Nephrology American Thoracic Society American Trauma Society Americans for Better Care of the Dying America's Health Insurance Plans Arthritis Foundation Association for Clinical Research Training Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology Association of Academic Health Centers Association of American Medical Colleges Association of Departments of Family Medicine Association of Family Practice Residency Directors Association of Medical School Pediatric Department Chairs Association of Minority Health Professional Schools Association of Professors of Medicine Association of Program Directors in Internal Medicine Association of Schools of Public Health Association of Specialty Professors Association of Subspecialty Professors Association of University Programs in Health Administration Association of Women's Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America Brandeis University Center for Health Care Strategies, Inc. Center for Studying Health System Change Center for Telehealth & E-Health Law Clerkship Directors in Internal Medicine Coalition for American Trauma Care Coalition for Health Funding Coalition for Health Information Policy 4

5 Coalition for Health Services Research Columbia University School of Public Health Consortium of Social Science Associations Consumer Health Access through Technology (CHATT) Coalition The Dow Chemical Company Duke University Excellus BlueCross BlueShield Ford Motor Company General Motors Corporation The George Washington University Georgetown University Gundersen Lutheran Medical Center Harvard Medical School Harvard University Harvard University School of Public Health Health and Medicine Counsel of Washington Health Insurance Association of America Health Sector Supply Chain Research Consortium, Arizona State University HIP Health Plans Home Care Technology Association of America HSC Foundation International & American Associations for Dental Research Johns Hopkins University The Joint Commission Kaiser Permanente March of Dimes Foundation Marshfield Clinic Massachusetts General Hospital Matria Healthcare, Inc. Medco Health Solutions Medical College of Wisconsin Medical Device Manufacturers Association Medical Group Management Association Medical Library Association/Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries The Mount Sinai Medical Center Mount Sinai School of Medicine National Area Health Education Centers Organization National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems National Association of Chain Drug Stores National Association of Children's Hospitals and Related Institutions National Association of Local Boards of Health National Black Nurses Association National Business Coalition on Health National Business Group on Health National Conference of State Legislatures National Health Council 5

6 National Institute of Health Care Management National Mental Health Association National Osteoporosis Foundation National Partnership for Women and Families National Rural Health Association North American Primary Care Research Group Organizations of Academic Family Medicine Paralyzed Veterans of America The Permanente Federation Pfizer Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America Renal Physicians Association Research Triangle Institute Research!America RTI International Rutgers University Snell Prosthetic and Orthotic Laboratory Society for Adolescent Medicine Society for Medical Decision Making Society for Pediatric Research Society for Women's Health Research Society of General Internal Medicine Society of Hospital Medicine Society of Teachers of Family Medicine The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Spina Bifida Foundation United Health Group United Hospital Fund of New York University of California, Berkeley University of California, Los Angeles University of California, San Francisco University of Michigan University of Pennsylvania University Of Southern California University of Southern Maine, Institute for Health Policy, Muskie School of Public Service University of Tennessee, Memphis University of Washington Washington Business Group on Health WellPoint, Inc. 6

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